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Cedar Rapids Community School District, Iowa

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Cedar Rapids Community School District
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Cedar Rapids School Logo.jpg
District Profile
Superintendent:David Benson
Enrollment:16,078
Graduation rate:81.6%
Number of schools:31
Budget: $241.1 million
Website:School Home Page
Board of Education
Board president:Mary Meisterling
Board members:7
Term length:4
Cedar Rapids Community School District is a school district in Iowa that served 16,078 K-12 students in 2012.[1] The district is the second largest by enrollment in the state of Iowa.

About the district

Cedar Rapids is located in Linn County, Iowa
Cedar Rapids is the county seat of Linn County, which is located in eastern Iowa. The city’s population is 126,326 according to the 2010 U.S. Census.[2] The Cedar River cuts through the city before connecting with the Iowa River and the Mississippi River.

Demographics

Cedar Rapids outperforms the rest of Iowa based on median income and higher education achievement while lagging behind the state poverty rate. The 2010 U.S. Census found that the median household income in Cedar Rapids is $51,108 compared to $50,451 for Iowa. The percentage of residents over 25 years old with undergraduate degrees is higher in Cedar Rapids (29.6%) than Iowa (24.9%). Cedar Rapids has a higher poverty rate at 12.6% than the 11.9% rate for the entire state.[2]

Racial Demographics, 2012[2]
Race Cedar Rapids (%) Iowa (%)
White 88.0 91.3
Black or African American 5.6 2.9
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.3 0.4
Asian 2.2 1.7
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.1 0.1
Two or More Races 2.9 1.8
Hispanic or Latino 3.3 5.0

Presidential Voting Pattern[3]
Year Democratic Vote (%) Republican Vote (%)
2012 57.9 40.2
2008 60.0 38.5
2004 54.6 44.7
2000 53.1 44.0


Superintendent

The current Superintendent is Dr. David Benson, who has held the position since his appointment in 2009. Benson was named Kansas State Superintendent of the Year in 2001 while serving as Superintendent of Blue Valley School District in Overland Park, Kansas.[4]

School board

The Cedar Rapids Board of Education is a seven-member board with each member elected to a four-year term. Members of the Board of Education are not compensated for their services.[5]

Cedar Rapids Board of Education
Member District Assumed Office Term Ends
Gary Anhalt At-large 2009 2017
John Laverty At-large 2007 2015
Ann Rosenthal At-large 1999 2015
Mary Meisterling District 1 2002 2015
Nancy Humbles District 2 2009 2017
Keith Westercamp District 3 1997 2017
Allen Witt District 4 2011 2015

School board elections

See also: Cedar Rapids Community School District elections (2013)

Members of the Board of Education are elected to four-year terms on a staggered basis. Each election is held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in September of odd-numbered years. Three seats were up for election on September 10, 2013 and four seats will be up for election in September 2015.[5]

Budget

Cedar Rapids Community School District publishes its annual budget on its website.[6]

Expenditures by Category
School Year Staff Expenses Student Services Operational Expenses Debt Service Other Budget Total
Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget
2012-2013 $156,296,192 61% $4,980,992 1.9% $79,828,176 31.1% $8,650,913 3.4% $6,626,750 2.6% $256,383,023
2013-2014 $151,337,177 61.3% $4,935,545 2% $75,065,249 30.4% $8,657,351 3.5% $6,879,239 2.8% $246,874,561
Averages: $153,816,684.5 61% $4,958,268.5 2% $77,446,712.5 31% $8,654,132 3% $6,752,994.5 3% $251,628,792

Teacher salaries

The Cedar Rapids Community School District employed 1,269 teachers during the 2012-2013 school year. Teachers are placed into salary categories based on educational attainment. The salary schedule increases pay within degree categories for teachers who accrue professional growth credits through college courses and re-certification requirements. Teachers with Bachelor's degrees receive pay increases at 12 and 24 hours credits while teachers with Master's degrees earn increases after 15, 30 and 45 credits. The following table represents instructional salaries negotiated for the 2012-2013 year between the district and the Cedar Rapids Education Association:[7][8]

Salary structure
Level Minimum salary ($) Maximum salary ($)
BA 43,000 53,179
BA + 12 44,935 56,090
BA + 24 46,957 62,525
MA 49,305 63,074
MA + 15 51,770 67,246
MA + 30 54,359 71,452
MA + 45 57,077 76,713
PhD 59,930 82,336

Union

Teachers in Cedar Rapids Community School District are represented by the Cedar Rapids Education Association (CREA). The CREA is currently led by Sue Clapp.[9] CREA is an affiliate organization of the National Education Association and the Iowa State Education Association.[10]

Schools in district

Enrollment

Cedar Rapids Community School District served 16,078 students during the 2012-2013 school year. The district has experienced an 8% decrease in enrollment between 2008 and 2012. The following chart details total enrollment in the district within that time span:[11]

Total enrollment
Year Enrollment Year-to-year change (%)
2008 17,503
2009 16,913 -3.5
2010 16,397 -3.1
2011 16,261 -0.8
2012 16,078 -1.1

District schools

Cedar Rapids Community School District operates 31 schools listed below in alphabetical order:[12]

Cedar Rapids Schools
Name Grades
Arthur Elementary K-5
Cleveland Elementary K-5
Coolidge Elementary K-5
Erskine Elementary K-5
Franklin Middle School 6-8
Garfield Elementary K-5
Grant Elementary K-5
Grant Wood Elementary K-5
Harding Middle School 6-8
Harrison Elementary K-5
Hiawatha Elementary K-5
Hoover Elementary K-5
Jackson Elementary K-5
Jefferson High School 9-12
Johnson Elementary K-5
Kenwood Elementary K-5
Kennedy High School 9-12
Madison Elementary K-5
McKinley Middle School 6-8
Metro High School 9-12
Nixon Elementary K-5
Pierce Elementary K-5
Roosevelt Middle School 6-8
Taft Middle School 6-8
Taylor Elementary K-5
Truman Elementary K-5
Van Buren Elementary K-5
Viola Gibson Elementary K-5
Washington High School 9-12
Wilson Middle School 6-8
Wright Elementary K-5

Academic performance

The Iowa Department of Education administered tests to determine Annual Yearly Progress (AYP) in K-12 schools during the 2011-2012 school year. The Iowa Assessment and Iowa Alternate Assessment were conducted to determine math and reading levels for students in grades 3-8 and 11. Evaluations were used by the Department of Education to comply with federal No Child Left Behind standards for student evaluation. A report published in September 2012 by the department indicated that 99.7% of students in Iowa participated in assessments.[13]

According to this report, Cedar Rapids Community School District was considered a District in Need of Assistance based on reading scores. The State Report Card also highlighted 18 district schools that were considered Schools in Need of Assistance based on math or reading scores.

State performance levels

Reading Performance Achievement Levels, 2011-2012
Grade Low Intermediate High
3 23.2 59.6 17.3
4 25.6 56.6 17.8
5 25.7 59.4 14.9
6 35.4 50.6 14.0
7 32.5 55.0 12.4
8 33.9 54.6 11.5
11 16.1 69.2 14.8

Math Performance Achievement Levels, 2011-2012
Grade Low Intermediate High
3 20.5 56.2 23.3
4 21.8 56.2 22.0
5 22.0 54.6 23.4
6 28.4 52.4 19.2
7 21.2 59.1 19.8
8 25.4 55.6 19.0
11 17.2 65.0 17.8

Performance comparisons

Percentage of Students at Achievement Level, Reading, Grade 4
Achievement Level Iowa United States
Below Basic 31 34
Basic 35 34
Proficient 27 25
Advanced 6 7

Percentage of Students at Achievement Level, Math, Grade 4
Achievement Level Iowa United States
Below Basic 14 18
Basic 43 42
Proficient 37 33
Advanced 6 6

Percentage of Students at Achievement Level, Reading, Grade 8
Achievement Level Iowa United States
Below Basic 23 25
Basic 44 43
Proficient 31 29
Advanced 2 3

Percentage of Students at Achievement Level, Math, Grade 8
Achievement Level Iowa United States
Below Basic 23 28
Basic 43 39
Proficient 26 26
Advanced 8 8

Issues

School closure debate

On March 12, 2012, the Cedar Rapids Board of Education voted 6-1 to close Monroe Elementary School and Polk Elementary School at the end of the 2011-2012 school year. Parents organized a campaign to save Polk Elementary School prior to the vote while Monroe Elementary School was allowed to close with little organized opposition. Superintendent Dave Benson suggested the closure of three elementary schools in February 2012 due to financial concerns and declining enrollment. Emails between Benson and school board members released by The Gazette in May 2012 showed disagreement over the inclusion of Harrison Elementary during the March 12 discussion of school closures.[14]

Contact information

Cedar Rapids School Logo.jpg
Cedar Rapids Board of Education
2500 Edgewood Road NW
Cedar Rapids, IA 52405
Phone: (319) 558-2000

Website evaluation

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Transparency grading process
Main article: Evaluation of Iowa school district websites

Website reviewed on December 28, 2011.

The good

  • Budget documents are available.[15]
  • Information is posted about meetings.[16]
  • Information and contact details are posted about elected officials.[17]
  • Contact details are provided for key administrative officials.[18]
  • Employee contracts are available.[19]
  • Financial audits are published.[20]
  • Certification and background check information is posted.[21]

The bad

  • Local tax information is not available.
  • Employee contracts are not posted.
  • Public records request information is not available.
  • No information is provided on academic performance.

See also

External links

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References

  1. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "District Fast Facts," Accessed July 25, 2013
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 U.S.Census, "Quick Facts: Cedar Rapids," Accessed July 25, 2013
  3. Linn County Election Services, "Election Results," Accessed July 25, 2013
  4. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Dr. David Benson," Accessed July 25, 2013
  5. 5.0 5.1 Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Board of Education," accessed July 25, 2013
  6. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Fiscal Year 2013-2014 Budget," accessed November 26, 2013
  7. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Teacher Contract," Accessed July 26, 2013
  8. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Typical Salaries," Accessed July 26, 2013
  9. Cedar Rapids Education Association, "Officers," Accessed July 26, 2013
  10. Cedar Rapids Education Association, "Association Q&A," Accessed July 26, 2013
  11. Iowa Department of Education, "Certified Enrollment," Accessed July 25, 2013
  12. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Schools," Accessed July 25, 2013
  13. Iowa Department of Education, "Education Statistics," Accessed July 26, 2013
  14. The Gazette, "Emails shed light on process leading to Cedar Rapids school closings," May 28, 2012
  15. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Business Services," Accessed July 30, 2013
  16. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Board Meetings," Accessed July 30, 2013
  17. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Appointed Committees," Accessed July 30, 2013
  18. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Superintendent's Cabinet," Accessed July 30, 2013
  19. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Employee Agreements," Accessed July 30, 2013
  20. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "Comprehensive Annual Financial Report," Accessed July 30, 2013
  21. Cedar Rapids Community School District, "How to Apply," Accessed July 30, 2013